Here Are the 10 Most Inspirational L.A. Women of 2015


Edina Lekovic

She delivered the inaugural sermon at the nation’s first women’s mosque

Edina Lekovic

Photograph by Emily Shur

Edina Lekovic has spent the past 15 years helping Muslim Angelenos find their voice. In January the 38-year-old director of policy and programming for the Muslim Public Affairs Council used her own in a new way: She gave the khutbah, or homily, when America’s first all-female mosque opened in the Pico-Union neighborhood near downtown. Lekovic describes the experience as sacred—and emblematic of L.A. “There’s a really active and vibrant network of faith leaders who cross lines to stand together and learn from each other in Los Angeles,” she says. “I don’t know that the Women’s Mosque could have—or should have—come out of any other city in America.” Even here, however, social progress takes time, and changing the public’s perception of the Muslim community remains a major challenge. “Most of the media coverage is still fairly reactive,” Lekovic says. “It’s ‘terror plot’ or ‘terror threat’ or ‘arrest.’ It’s real news, but other kinds of stories about Muslim Angelenos are few and far between.”